Cauliflower Red Lentil and Potato Curry

4.74 from 15 votes
1 hour
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Cauliflower, Red Lentil and Potato Curry is spicy, hearty and delicious!  Red lentils cook quickly and it’s super easy to vary the veggies in this Indian-inspired dish!

Photo of Cauliflower Red Lentil and Potato Curry in decorative bowl with serving spoon.

Hope you all had a wonderful New Year’s celebration!  My deepest and sincere appreciation to all of you for your support, feedback and for following From A Chef’s Kitchen!  Here’s to a great year ahead!

Recently I’ve noticed a common theme in my Facebook feed and in other food-related stories:  Predicted food trends for 2016 which are always fun to read.

The predictions are all over the board, but one I’ve seen in numerous places is that lentils will hit it big this year.  In fact, the United Nations has proclaimed 2016 to be the International Year of Pulses and established January 6th as a day to love and celebrate pulses.

Besides lentils, pulses also include chickpeas, beans and peas.  They’re a great, inexpensive source of protein.

I’m glad lentils are finally getting their due!  I’m a lentil-lover from way back.  I have always loved this “tale” from Anthony de Mello:

“The philosopher Diogenes was eating bread and lentils for supper. He was seen by the philosopher Aristippus, who lived comfortably by flattering the king. Said Aristippus, “If you would learn to be subservient to the king you would not have to live on lentils.” Said Diogenes, “Learn to live on lentils and you will not have to be subservient to the king.”

My Cauliflower Red Lentil and Potato Curry is a spicy and flavorful way to love and celebrate the lentil.

Photo of a jar of lentils.

Tips for cooking lentils:

  • Red lentils cook very quickly and practically melt into the dish they’re in.
  • If using brown or green lentils (which take longer to cook), you’ll need to adjust the cooking time.  My recommendation would be to cook them separately then add them to the dish at the very end.
  • No matter which type of lentil you use, it’s always a good idea to look them over for odd-looking bits, stones and stems.  I spread them out on a white paper plate to look them over then bend the plate to guide them into the pot.

Now, you could go to the trouble of making your own curry spice blend, but I prefer to use a good blend such as the Madras curry from Penzeys.

My Cauliflower Red Lentil and Potato Curry is the perfect recipe to play around with by varying or adding vegetables such as green beans or spinach, and for protein, chickpeas instead of potatoes would be perfect!

Happy International Pulse Day, everyone!

More Indian-inspired vegetarian and vegan curries:

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Cauliflower Red Lentil and Potato Curry

4.74 from 15 votes

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By: Carol | From A Chef's Kitchen
Cauliflower, Red Lentil and Potato Curry is spicy, hearty and delicious!  Red lentils cook quickly and it's super easy to vary the veggies in this Indian-inspired dish!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Vegetarian / Vegan Entrees
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4
Calories 352 kcal


  • 4 tablespoons canola oil - or coconut oil, divided
  • 1 small head cauliflower - separated into florets
  • 1 medium onion - finely chopped
  • 1 small bell pepper - green, red or yellow
  • 2 tablespoons Madras curry powder - such as Penzeys
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 4 cloves garlic - minced
  • 1 can (15-ounce) diced tomatoes - undrained
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup red lentils - picked over
  • 1 pound small Yukon gold potatoes - cubed
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Toss cauliflower with 2 tablespoons oil. Spread out on a baking sheet and roast until just tender, approximately 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a large, shallow pot over medium-high heat.
  • Add the onion and pepper, reduce heat to medium-low and cook until tender, approximately 10 minutes.
  • Add curry powder, ginger, garlic and stir 30 seconds.
  • Add tomatoes, vegetable broth, red lentils and potatoes. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover slightly and simmer 15-20 minutes or until lentils and potatoes are tender.
  • Stir in cauliflower and heat through.
  • Add cilantro and season to taste with salt and black pepper


MAKE-AHEAD:  Can be prepared up to two days ahead. Heat on high in the microwave until hot, stirring halfway through.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 352kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 885mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 8g

These are estimated values generated from a nutritional database using unbranded products. Please do your own research with the products you're using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I made this recipe for my family. I am trying to do a non-meat meal once or twice a week. I modified your recipe a bit. I seasoned the cauliflower with masala seasoning. I used chicken broth instead of vegetable and I added 1/4 cup of whipping cream to create a smoother sauce. My kids had two helpings and liked it , my husband and I liked it as well.

  2. 5 stars
    I can’t even count how many times I’ve made this recipe. I love it so much. I even got my midwestern father to enjoy a vegan meal. Everyone I cook it for wants more!

  3. 5 stars
    I wasn’t feeling too well and made this for dinner. I’m glad there were leftovers because this sat comfortably in my tummy.

  4. I enjoyed the recipe, but it needed a more heat. I added some red pepper flakes after cooking. During cooking, I also added a broken up cinnamon stick. I chopped up the potatoes into a very small dice, but they did require cooking for longer than 20 minutes as directed. Add another 10 mins.

  5. 5 stars
    I made a half batch of this last night, but ended up using the full 2 tablespoons of curry powder because it did taste a bit bland with the proportional amount. However, I think this is a great starting point for something you can really play around with. Add different vegetables, try split peas instead of lentils, etc. I added a serrano pepper for spice. This recipe can be tweaked to satisfy almost any palate! I’m really happy I tried it and I’ve bookmarked the recipe for future use.

  6. 4 stars
    I made this curry for dinner last night and it was great! The roasted cauliflower adds a really nice texture. I followed the recipe exactly as written, other than adding 1 can of coconut milk in addition to the 2 cans of vegetable broth.

    The one issue I had was that the potatoes were not tender after simmering for 15-20 mins. It took about 45-50 mins of simmering for my potatoes to be fork tender. Next time I make this I’ll probably cook the potatoes a little before adding them to the curry so that it doesn’t take as long.

    1. Hi, Katie, Thanks so much and glad you enjoyed. 45-50 minutes to cook potatoes is a very long time! What size did you cut them? Yes, the potatoes could be cooked separately at a full rolling boil so they would not take that long. Thanks again!

  7. 5 stars
    Loved this recipe! I was looking all over for a potato, lentil, cauliflower curry. My friend can’t eat bell peppers so I added grated carrot and frozen peas at the end of the cooking time. I also added 3/4 of a can of coconut milk and some Thai red curry paste and salt. I pulled the grated carrot idea your Vegan Thai Red Curry with Cauliflower and Potatoes. Lovely dinner light and flavorful with a touch of heat. I will make this again!

    Btw… your star rating system isn’t working or I would give this 5 stars!

    1. Thanks so much, Laura! I’m in the process of updating each and every recipe to a new format that also includes a nutritional analysis so yeah, what’s there may not be fully functional because of the old format. So glad you enjoyed and hope to get this recipe updated very soon! Thanks again!

    1. Hi, Francesca, Thanks so much for your feedback! This is a super-versatile recipe and I love when my readers make a recipe their own. I like to say that a recipe is simply a road map and how one gets to the final destination is up to them. Glad you enjoyed and please stay in touch!